Follow the Learning of my Grade 6/7s!

Hello everyone,

Over the past school year, my grade 7s have been blogging and tweeting about our classroom activities. While we mastered safety and appropriate behavior online, our site was private. However, my students have grown so much in their online citizenship that we are ready to share our learning with you. Please check out our classroom blog and follow the link to our twitter account if you are interested.

http://middleyearmarvels.blogspot.ca/ 

EZVid — Great screencasting tool!

I actually tried this program to record a skype session with a friend and it worked wonderfully! This would have awesome classroom applications as students could record their progress through online learning! I love the option of editing the video, adding music/voice recordings  and the many other features. Check it out — its free!

Katrina Morrell

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Twitter in the Classroom

As a new user to twitter, this information will be so helpful in integrating this tool into the classroom. Thanks for posting!

Megan Pearce

Just thought I’d share this with my fellow soon to be teachers! This checklist would be great to incorporate into a class where you are using Twitter. I think the tasks are appropriate for students to learn how to use Twitter properly and safely. I especially liked the “recognized a spam or hacker tweet.” – great way to teach students about internet safety through examples.Twitter in the Classroom

 

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Growing as an Educator through 21st Century Teaching

Throughout my engagement with technology, I have come a long way. However, I know that there is still room for improvement. On pinterest, I found another infographic (surprise!) on actions teachers can take to become better educators and leaders of students in the 21st century.

So far, my journey using technology for learning purposes has led me to THINK beyond the classroom, BECOME aware of other good teachers, CAPTURE what students are learning through documentation, PRACTICE using technology before doing it in the classroom, use SOCIAL MEDIA to connect with others and add a GAMING element to learning. I realize that while these are notable changes, they only take place at the classroom level.

The skills  that I want to expand on are when I begin teaching are  INCLUDING world in learning, LOOKING for ways to involve the community, HAVING a cause where students can engage in social responsibility and INCORPORATING parents into learning. If you view my Major Project/Unit Sample, I think that it includes some of these attributes, although I have yet to try this with a class.

Please comment if you can think of any other notable skills/attributes of a 21st century teacher!

Ways to Engage Students Part II

In my last post, I included an infographic of responses a teacher may use during instruction to motivate and engage an off-task student. I recently found another relevant picture that provides some proactive strategies teachers can use to prevent off-task behavior all together. It focuses on engaging all of the different modes of learning we may find in our students such as audio, visual, kinesthetic or social. During internship, I  used a few of these strategies without realizing it, however I would have found it helpful to have this explicit information beforehand so that I would have been able to consciously integrate all of these aspects during my planning. I am excited to try these strategies when I begin teaching!

 

Ways to Engage Students

Source: anethicalisland.wordpress.com via Miranda on Pinterest

It can be challenging at times when we are working with a student who is not engaged in our lesson. So often, we fall into the easy route of blaming the student for inability to sit still, focus or behave.  Way too often, this repeated behavior results in teachers developing a “deficit” view of the student where we think there may be something “wrong” with them. Perhaps they need to be diagnosed, or receive additional classroom support. I would like to challenge this pattern in my own classroom. The statement on the bottom of this picture is important to remind me that the student’s engagement is my responsibility to address in my planning. When all else fails, this list serves as a great bank of strategies that we may utilize to help gain the attention of all our students.

Resources for Learning a New Language

As my peer Charlayna McGill learned about a new language for our ECMP 355 project, she came across some interesting resources that can support students in learning a new language.

The first one is a free program called byki that gives the learner flash cards and tests them on their understanding. As assessment, the student must type the word shown on the card in their native language to demonstrate their understanding.

Byki

The second resource is called Digital Dialects and provides games in almost every language to support a students learning of basic terminology and essential communicative phrases.

Digital Dialects

I think that these tools demonstrate just how much someone can learn online — and for the price of free! I would use these tools in my classroom to support EAL learners and also my instruction in French. On a personal level, I think it would be very cool to use these tools in a heritage project for students (I know I would be interested in learning Ukrainian).

Despite all of the positive attributes that these tools have for independent learning, they would still need to be used with the support of learning activities or interactions with someone who spoke the language. How cool would it be to have students skype with someone who speaks the language after they have studied it?!?

Great Resource for Teaching Students about Dreamcatchers

Emily's Dreamcatchers

Emily Perreault chose to learn about dream catchers for her major project in ECMP using technology as a support. She used Pinterest, Wikispaces, and her mother’s traditional knowledge to document the process of creating these beautiful pieces. This learning experience would fit into the Saskatchewan curriculum beautifully as Grade 4 students learn about First Nations Tribes in Canada.

Great Photo

Very interesting infographic. I think that this research poses some serious questions for educators to ask in regards to the changes that are taking place in Saskatchewan today.

Why are we implementing standardized testing. What benefits does it truly have for students?

Would reduced classroom sizes benefit our students? How could we reduce sizes?

What is inhibiting us from increasing physical activity and education in our curriculum?

What other social factors support the value of, and funding for, education?

Megan Pearce

I found this photo on Pinterest and I think it has some interesting facts about education in Finland. It would be great to see some of these ideas used in all areas of the world to make schools and education even better for students and teachers!

Great Photo

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This summarizes my journey through education perfectly!

risks

As I come to the end of my time in University, I thought this picture summarized my journey quite well. I have lost many times and learned that you don’t leave a 10 page paper until the night before and that sometimes you need to trash your meticulously planned lesson in order for real learning to take place. I have also experienced much success of which I am so grateful for. I have survived 4 years of university and grown through amazing experiences such as internship. I have met friends and colleagues who have influenced me forever and I have also realized the VALUE of longtime family and friends.

I will remember this motivating statement and I hope that I have many chances to both win and lose as I enter the world of teaching!

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